This week’s shot of fall by the numbers
Coolest temperatures since May on the way
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Monday’s cold front will be the first true fall front of the season. It will usher in much drier, sunnier, cooler, and less humid air for all of Alabama. The afternoons won’t necessarily be cooler, but the overnights will be.
We’re talking areawide lows in the 60s, with many seeing at least a night or two in the 50s. The coolest spots in Alabama will slip all the way down into the lower 50s Monday night and Tuesday night!
It will be coolest weather Montgomery has seen since May. That’s the last time we saw an overnight low drop below 60 degrees. The cooler air won’t be record-breaking, but it will be well below normal for mid-September. Normal lows right now are still in the upper 60s. If you’re wondering what the record lows are for this week, they are in the upper 40s and lower 50s. So not quite to record levels, but it’s feasible that we won’t be too terribly far from a record low.
Montgomery last saw a low temperature below 65° on May 29th. An overnight low below 60° was last observed all the back on May 11th. If we do wind up getting as low as 55°, which is a possibility, it would be only the second time since May 1st! The other time was May 8th when the mercury fell to a crisp 53 degrees.
To get a shot of fall-like weather like this in mid-September is quite normal. Since records began being kept in Montgomery, the average first date of a low temperature at or below 60 degrees is September 16th. That would mean this week’s fall weather is actually right on cue. Taking it a step farther, the average date for the first temperature at or below 50 degrees is October 7th.
The humidity falling off a cliff will be the other highly noticeable effect of this cold front.
Dew points will plummet into the 50s tonight and remain there through Wednesday. They will slowly creep upwards into the lower and possibly middle 60s starting Thursday. That will still be comfortable compared to what we have seen over the last 3+ months.
The lower dew points will help keep rain and even cloud cover away from Central Alabama. Total rainfall over the next 7 days will likely be zero. The exception may be a shower or two in Southeast Alabama later this week. This drier weather shouldn’t come as a big surprise considering September is, on average, one of the driest months of the year.
Fortunately I don’t see a big drought or wildfire concern with this impending dry stretch because the antecedent conditions are wet. There has been plenty of rain this summer with August actually registering as one of the wettest Augusts ever recorded in Montgomery!
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